I just visited Stockholm, Sweden for 3 days in February and I loved it! I went with my husband and 2 friends and we were all raving about how nice and helpful the locals were and how great the food was. It was also a beautiful city to walk around in. Seriously though, the people were so kind! Most places I have been don’t really like tourists but on two or more occasions, people helped me with directions or gave us advice on where to go without us even asking. One gentleman heard us talking about a restaurant we were going to and saw us looking at the map so he spoke up and told us he was going that way and didn’t mind taking us. I’ve never had that happen before so Stockholm definitely got points for that! In addition to the sweet people and the amazing food (Swedish meatballs are YUMMY), there was so much to see.
First thing we did when we arrived was check-in to our hotel. How cool is a hotel on the river? Well we thought it would be a unique experience so we decided to give it a shot. The rooms were definitely TINY but the staff was very helpful and the location was great.
Hotel: Rygerfjord Hotel & Hostel
The day we arrived we planned to just explore the town. We walked from our hotel to Old Town, which offered a lot of interesting buildings, monuments, restaurants, and souvenir shops. We saw the Parliament House, Royal Palace, and Kungstradgarden. We then decided to take the metro to a Mexican Restaurant, La Neta, that had great reviews and was recommended to me. I was craving some authentic Mexican. The food was delicious but the restaurant was very tiny and cramped.
After dinner, we hopped back on the metro (we got a 3 day pass that was good for all transportation- extremely convenient) and went to Fotografiska Photography Museum. If you are into photography, this was an interesting museum. It is one of the only attractions that is open later than 6 P.M. (9AM-11PM most days) so it gives you something to do at night. There are a lot of familiar faces in the museum, such as photographs of Taylor Swift, Brad Pitt, Jack Black and Robert De Niro.
First thing we did on our second day was the Royal Palace. Our entry ticket gave us access to the Royal Apartments, the Treasury where we saw magnificent Crown Jewels, and the Tre Kronor Museum. After our visit, we ate lunch at a nearby restaurant before coming back at noon for the changing of the guard.
After the Royal Palace, we took the tram to the Skansen Open-Air Museum. This was the first open-air museum I have been to and I thought it was a very cool museum. It was huge! There were traditional buildings and farmsteads from all over Sweden that made up the 75 acres of living history. There were guides wearing traditional costumes that could tell us about life there in former times. My favorite part was seeing the Scandinavian wild animals in the natural enclosures. There is also an aquarium that costs extra that we did not go in.
Next, we ate at one of the restaurants across the street, where we enjoyed a traditional Swedish meal. The Swedish meatballs were amazing and so was the burger. We also got the locally brewed beer and gluhwein (hot wine). We headed back to our hotel for a break since it was Superbowl Sunday and the game didn’t start until 1AM in Sweden. We found a bar that was going to play the game, O’Learys. I recommend this restaurant for good bar food and a great time. There are 4 levels and it was packed with fans of American football.
Since our metro pass was good for all transportation, we decided to take the ferry to the Vasa Museum. It was only about a 15-minute ride. This was my favorite part of the trip. Upon entering the museum, we watched a film in English that set up the shipwreck. In 1628, the Vasa ship set sail and sank in the Stockholm harbour. The wreck was salvaged in 1961 after 333 years under the sea. This museum offered many exhibitions on 4 different levels. We were lucky enough to show up just before the free English tour, which was 30-minutes long and gave a good introduction before we explored the rest of the museums on our own.
After about two hours in the Vasa Museet, we walked around the city and went in a few shops. If we had more time on our trip, we would have like to go to Uppsala or Archipelago, which are outside of Stockholm.
On my 9-day Scandinavia and Baltic Cruise with Norwegian Cruise Line, one of the stops was Stockholm so I got to explore the city a little bit further. This time, I focused more of my time just walking around and enjoying the sights.
One new thing that I did was the Viking Museum, Vikingaliv. In the exhibition, you will meet the Vikings through movies, scenery, projections, and sound effects as well as archaeological objects. My favorite part was Ragnfrid’s Saga, which is a Viking ride downstairs where you get to follow along on a trip to the Viking Age. With sounds, light, and atmospheric environments, you travel through the 11-minute journey that is told by Ragnfrid herself.
After the Viking Museum, I walked to the Nordic Museum, or Nordiska Museet. This is Sweden’s largest museum of cultural history. Here, you will discover clothes and fashion, textiles and jewelry, homes and furniture, photography, toys, folk art, glass and porcelain. There is also an exhibition about the only indigenous people in Sweden, the Sami.